The most important factor, in my view, in accounting for the emergency of LEQ is the demographic decline and cultural reorganization of the jungle tribes, the other factors being secondary.
Before embarking on the list of specific LEQ features that point to its having undergone a process of pidginization, [should make my claim more precise, distinguishing it from other claims about language mixing in Quechua.
Whatever processes have led to the differences between LEQ and its antecedent forms, there is no compiling reason so far to appeal to substrate languages (Zaparo, Waorani, Shuar, etc.
Whatever the merit of these claims for specific Sierra dialects, they do not apply to LEQ, which has undergone little influence from Spanish.
Zaparo or Spanish) is involved in the emergence of LEQ, but rather a universal one (i.
Linguistic features of LEQ and its relation to highland varieties
Let us turn to the ways in which LEQ differs from dialects of Quechua supposedly similar to the varieties from which LEQ was derived.
Before starting on a systematic comparison, consider first a LEQ sentence illustrating a number of diagnostic features in which it differs from its Southern Peruvian counterpart:(2)
Also, note that in the Peruvian case the conditional clause precedes the main verb, while in LEQ it follows the main verb.
In Table 1 are listed a number of the features separating the two sets of varieties; here the LEQ features hold for all or most of the Ecuadorean Quechua varieties.
Let us now consider in more detail how LEQ is related linguistically to highland dialects of Ecuadorean Quechua.
Phonologically, LEQ has several conservative features as well: